Mark Cuban has been thinking about empire-building. Not his own.
In a fascinating blog this weekend, Cuban doled out advice to Newscorp's Rupert Murdoch about charging for content at MySpace and other Newscorp websites.
"Rupert, you didn't ask my opinion on this," Cuban starts the blog, "but since when has that ever stopped me."
First, Cuban suggests that Murdoch should block aggregation sites from linking to Newscorp content, even though he admits that goes against "conventional wisdom". Cuban specifically points to sites like Michael Wolff's Newser.com, which is sending Murdoch "inventory" that he usually can't monetize. "Why would you help a site that is a direct competitor for minimal incremental revenue?"
Cuban says if Newscorp and other mainstream news sites began blocking aggregators' access, "The aggregator sites that try to front end the content you invest a ton of money to create will find themselves all relying on AP, Reuters and individual bloggers." Is that likely? "This is where all the netizens jump in and tell me I'm crazy," he writes. "That news sites won't ever do this. That's not the internet way. Which of course is exactly how they respond to every business question involving the net."